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Archive for the ‘Military News’ Category

Colonel Cromwell urges unity amongst the eastern counties

In Military News on March 10 at 9:00 am

10 March 1642/3 (Fri) || This day there came advertisement that Mr. Crumwell, one of the Burgesses of the Towne of Cambridge, calling himselfe a Colonell, retained in the service of the two Houses of Parliament, (having before committed many outrages in that University, and caused the heads of houses there to take downe their Organs, and all the furniture of their Chapels, and threatened to seize on, and dispose of all the Rents of the severall Colledges) had called divers of the Gentry and many of the Commonalty of the Counties of Essex, Suffolk, Norfolk, Cambridge and Hartford, to come before him: and that being come according to his sumons, he caused a report to be spread amongst them, that Prince Rupert was at hand with all his Forces, and thereupon advertised them how much it did concerne them to joyne together for the repulsing of the Common Enemie, that united forces were more proper for these times then distracted mindes; that he would have them seriously consider how acceptable a service they should doe the King in keeping five whole Counties in His obedience; and what rewards and praise they might most justly looke for from His Majestie, for so great a service. Such excellent arts have they to abuse the people, and make them thinke they doe good service to the King, when they endeavour to destroy him. || John Berkenhead/Peter Heylyn – Mercurius Aulicus (R)

Parliament orders punishment of City soldiers refusing to attend their colours

In London, Military News on January 6 at 9:50 pm

6 Jan 1642/3 || This day a complaint was made to the House of Commons from divers of the City Captaines for the great neglect, that divers of their Souldiers of the City did often times refuse and neglect to come to their Colours upon the drum beating; in so much that few or none divers times did appeare in that service; whereupon the Lord and Commons hath now made this order here following.

Whereas many of the Trained-Bands and others listed under severall Colonels and Captaines, Inhabiting within the Cities of London and Westminster, and the County of Midlesex, have neglected to make their appearance in Armes to doe such service, by day or night, within the Cities and Liberties aforesaid, and in the Tower of London as of them hath been required, being lawfully summoned thereunto by the beate of the Drum, or otherwise, for the defence of King and Parliament; the safety of the Cities and Tower of London, with the adjacent parts in the County of Middlesex: for the Reformation of so great a neglect, and for the avoyding of so eminent evills in these dangerous times that might ensure thereupon: It is this day ordered by the Lords and Commons now assembled in Parliament, that the Colonels, Captains and Lieutenants of the Trained bands or others in the Cities of London and Westminster, and Suburbs thereof, and the County of Middlesex, may inflict the punishment of two dayes imprisonment without Bayle, or Maine-prise¹ or the mulct² of five shillings for supply of the service, upon such Souldiers under their commands as shall not repair to their Colours at the time appointed, and do their duties there, when, and as often as they shall be required, unlesse they be reasonably excused: And that made knowne to the Captaine or other chiefe Officers, or being come to their Collours, shall depart, before they be lodged; or being to find Armes for others, shall refuse to provide them, also desired when, and as often as they shall be thereunto required. || Samuel Pecke – A Perfect Diurnall (P)

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¹ Mainprise was similar to bail, although mainprise specified that the surety was a sum of money, whereas bail did not. Under mainprise the accused could not be recalled to gaol, whereas bail (as it does now) permitted re-arrest. Mainprise is now obsolete.
² “Mulct” meant “forfeiture”

Western counties associate for protection

In Military News on December 22 at 11:58 pm

22 Dec 1642 || Wiltshire having partly felt the execrable cruelty and inhumanity of the Cavaliers, in the late sufferings of the honest and innocent Inhabitants of Marlborough (which cryeth still lowd to Heaven for direfull vengeance upon them) wherfore to preserve themselves from the like Ravagings for the future, they have firmely associated themselves with the Counties of Glocester and Sommerset, and amongst them all they have raised 10000. men, to secure and defend those three Shires against the Incursions of the ravenous Cavaliers. || Stephen Bowtell – England’s Memorable Accidents

Eastern counties ordered to associate

In Military News on December 22 at 11:45 pm

22 Dec 1642 (Thu) || The Parliament by a speciall and particular Declaration have ordered (because Papists and other wicked and ill-affected persons have combined and associated themselves to destroy the true Protestant Religion, the Lawes of the Land, the Priviledges of Parliament, and the Liberty of the Subject) that the Counties of Cambridge, Essex, Hartford, Norfolk and Suffolk, shall and may associate themselves, and mutually succour and assist one another, in the mutuall defence and preservation of themselves and of the Peace of the said Counties from all rapines, plundrings and spoylings of the said Papists and ill affected persons. And they have given them power to fight with all such as or shall be raised to levy Warre against the Parliament, and them to resist, suppresse, pursue, kill and slay, and to put to execution of death, and by all meanes to destroy as Enemies to the Kingdome, and they have constituted William Lord Gray of Warke to command in chief, as Major Generall of all the Forces to be raised in the said Counties &c. || Stephen Bowtell – England’s Memorable Accidents

Parliament encourages privateers

In Military News on December 13 at 11:15 pm

13 Dec 1642 || Whereas very great quantities of Ordnance, Armes, and other Warlike Amunition, and many Commanders and Souldiers have bin brought to Newcastle, and other places of this Kingdom from forraigne parts, and especially from Holland to be imployed against the Parliament, and the well affected people of this Nation that adhere unto them: for the future prevention of the like, divers owners and Masters of Ships have made knowne to the Parliament their voluntary disposition and readinesse to set forth some Ships and Pinaces in all points Warlikely appointed at their own proper costs and charges, which the Lords and Commons doe well approve of as a good and acceptable service, and tending very much to the honour of the King and the welfare of this Nation, and they have ordained and established that it shall and may be lawfull for any of the Kings good and loyall Subjects of this Kingdom to furnish for this intended imployment, so many Ships and other Vessells as they shall thinke fitting, and to put in them such numbers of Souldiers, Mariners and Gunners, Armes and Provisions, and to appoint over them such Commanders, Captaines and Officers as they shall thinke fit and set them forth to Sea. And with the same to seize and take all Ships with whatsoever shall be found in them, that shall come upon the English Coasts to the prejudice of this Kingdome, as also all Pyrates and Sea Rovers of what Nation soever, and their ships and goods whatsoever, and that the said Adventurers shall have and enjoy to their owne use without any account rendring, all ships, Goods, moneys, Plate, Armes, Ammunition, Victualls, Pillage, and spoyle, which they shall take comming into this Kingdome, against the Parliament and their adherents, onely reserving the tenths accustomed in such cases to be payd to the Admirall, &c. || Stephen Bowtell – England’s Memorable Accidents

The Royalists fortify Oxford; John Lilburne put on trial

In Military News, Oxford on December 10 at 11:58 pm

10 Dec 1642 (Sat) || Oxford is now a place of extraordinary account, the Pyoners are fortifying thereof, the Cavaliers are casting of Ordnance but they want metall, they are also exercising the art of making Gunpowder but they want saltpeeter, which unlesse they had greater store of, they need not cast more Ordnance as being likely to them but finall pleasure of which they stand in great need: And many of the Scholars who are not inclined to or capable of Martiall discipline are busied in making of verses to please the Cavaliers. ||

From Oxford it is informed by letters that Captaine Lilborne and some other Commanders that were taken prisoners by the Kings Army have been lately arraigned at Oxford for high treason and by the perswasion of Judge Heath the Jury hath found Captain Lilborne, and Captain [Edward] Wingate guilty, but at the first Captain Lilborne refused to plead to the Indictment for that he was indicted by an addition of Yeoman whereas he is a Gentleman of an ancient family whereupon when the Record was amended by the command of Judge Heath, then Captaine Lilborne said that he was at Brainford and did order his men there to defend that place against opposition by the commands of Parliament: And the Judge said doe not mention the Parliament, but were you not there, the Captain answered againe that he was there by the commands of Parliament to defend that place, and being unexpectedly assaulted by the Cavaliers when they hoped the treaty of accommodation had been as really intended by the Kings party as it was by the Parliaments side, till it was violated by that assault made upon them that were then peaceably at Brainford, he did make resistance to the forces advancing, then the Judge told him that he was runne from the Question, for he had confessed that he was there and bore armes against the King, Captain Lilborne desired then to have leave to speak for his life, and challenged that man that durst say he bore Armes against the King for he never did nor will, and though by the power and practises of Papists his Majestie is misled to declare that they fight against him, whereas his Conscience told him no subject he hath more truly or more earnestly seekes for to God by prayers, teares and fasting, for the spirituall and temporall good of the King then the Parliament and those that adhere to them, and in that resolution and opinion he resolved to die, many more circumstances passed at that triall the truth whereof will appeare by the next intelligence from Oxford. || A Continuation of Certain Speciall and Remarkable Passages

The military situation in Sussex

In Military News, Sussex on December 8 at 3:07 am

8 Dec 1642 || Bellona begins now to act her part of Warre upon the Sussex Stage; there are very great preparations in Lewes to advance for and regaine the City of Chichester, surprized for the Cavalliers by a treacherous plot of the new Sheriffe,³ Papists and malignant faction of the three Westerne Rapes in that County:¹ they threatned presently upon their good successe to plunder the Towne of Lewes if they resisted the execution of their Commission of Array; but the trained bands getting in suddenly to relieve it, made them to desist; yet they came so neere as to get possession of Bramber-bridge (the onely passage betweene the Eastern and the Western Rapes) which they guarded for ten dayes, but now have deserted it, and cry Peccavi,² and have since wrot Letters to excuse the Passages and to desire an Accomodation, which came from the Earle of Tenet; but this was since they heard of Mr. Stapleyes and Mr. Morleys Commission granted for the raising of Forces to expell them. Sir Michael Levesey and Mr. Temple are come into Lewes with a brave Troop of 200. lusty men out of Kent, and Mr. Morley is arrived there with his Troopes of above 200. more, with brave Commanders from London, whereof some are Scottish men. Their neighbour Papists have been searched and all their idolatrous Reliques broken downe and brought in Triumph into that Towne; so that you might have beene sprinkled there with Holy-water for nothing: and this Weeke they were to march towards Chichester.

It is further informed out of that County that Mr. Stapeley is somewhat ill in body, and thereupon hath sent his Commission to Mr. Morley, and given up to him his Command, whereby the worke is much hindred, and things out of order; that the Sheriffe is much affraid and if matters were composed amongst them, he might soone [be] driven out, or taken; that Sir Michael Levesey and Mr. Morley are very couragious, and so are all their Souldiers, and that they would faine be doing, but cannot, because they want ample directions from the Parliament. || Samuel Pecke – A Perfect Diurnall of the Passages in Parliament

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¹ A rape was an administrative district: Sussex was formerly divided into six of these.
² Peccavi is Latin for “I have sinned”.
³ Sir Edward Ford

In the Commons: seizure of bishops’ rents; Suffolk corn smuggling; a Royalist escape

In Hampshire, Military News, Suffolk on December 7 at 11:54 pm

7 Dec 1642 || The Lords declared their assents with the Commons in an Order formerly made by them for the seizing upon the Rents of the Bishops, Deanes, and Chapiters and also for the removing of the Kings Children out of London [City] backe to Saint James house.

The Commons received a Letter from Woodbridge in Suffolke, Intimating that there were some Shipping lying there [that] had taken in a great quantity of Corne in outlandish bottomes,¹ but they have made stoppe of the same untill the Houses pleasure should be knowne concerning it; whereupon it was Ordered, that the said shippes should be detayned and examined, and their lading to bee taken out and sold for the service of the Common-wealth.

By Letters from the Governours of Portsmouth to the Houses, It is informed that they have in an extraordinary manner secured Portsmouth and the Castle, and reinforced themselves for their owne defence, for that they heard the King intended to come that way, and that they have expended a 1000.l in making their provisions. And the like news also came from the Isle of Wight, of their securing that Island, onely that one of their Castles they desire might bee better manned, and that the Houses would grant them an Order for the taking in of 20. men more into that Castle, which was granted accordingly.

It was informed the Houses that Sergiant Major Bamfeild Prisoner in the Gatehouse made escape out of prison the last night, and is got to His Majesties Army. || Samuel Pecke – A Perfect Diurnall of the Passages in Parliament

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¹ “Bottom” in nautical terms can refer to a ship’s cargo space, or the cargo ship itself; thus the meaning here probably refers either to oddly-disguised cargo vessels (hence “outlandish”) , or to hidden cargo spaces holding smuggled goods.

Parliament troops take Marlow & Henley; a further report from Farnham Castle

In Berkshire, Military News, Oxfordshire, Surrey on December 4 at 11:14 pm

4 Dec 1642 (Sun) || Such was the care of the Lo: Generall, and Serjeant Major Skippon (man of action) … they had sent out a party of Horse and Dragooneers under the command of Colonell Sir William Waller to take in Farnham Castle, 18. miles from Windsor, on the left hand; and sent out another party of Horse and Dragooneers, with a Regiment of Foote, at the same time, to attempt the taking in of Marlo[w] magna, 10. miles on the right hand of Windsor; and also sent out a party of Horse towards Henley, to give them an Alarme, if not a Charge: the Cavaliers at Marlo were so possessed with feare (Prince Robert being there in person) that though there were in number foure to one of the Parliament souldiers, yet they quit the place and fled in great disorder, leaving some Waggons and armes behinde them: Colonell Browne the Citizen, tooke one Waggon laden with plate, and three Waggons more with provisions of good value, belonging to the Lord of Carnarvans mother: the Cavaleeres at Henley were as much affrighted as those of Marlo, and likewise abandoned the place: Sir William Waller prosecuted his designe with so good successe, that after he came before Farneham Castle, within three houres he forced his approach so neere the Castle Gates, that with a Petard he blew one of them open, and made his entrance, whereupon the Cavaliers threw their Armes over the wall, falling downe upon their knees, crying for quarter (not so much as having offered to treate of any honorable condition to depart like Souldiers) which Sir William Waller did give them, not suffering a souldier to affront them, though in extremity (according to the Law of Armes) they should have bin all put to the sword, there being sufficient provocation for it, considering that Colonell [Anthony] Fane brother to the Earle of Westmorland (who carried himselfe very valiantly at the assault, and hath more true noble English blood in his veines then the Earle, or any of his brothers have) was shot through the cheeke, and divers others wounded, yet revenge was suffered to be taken, though in heate of blood: How doth this action of mercy in the Parliament Souldiers, heape coales upon the heads of the barbarous and cruell Cavaliers; who when they killed not some of the Parliament souldiers at Brainford, yet they did so inhumanly use them there, which was worse than death it selfe, and although they stripped the Parliament souldiers bare foote, and bare legged, some to their shirts, and so dragged them away pynnioned, yet Sir William Waller let all these Cavaliers that had horses ride on horsebacke to London, and for such as were on foote, hires Carts to bring them to the Parliament, being about 80. of them (not a man of them stript of any of his cloathes) not proceeding or dealing with them, as the Cavaliers doe by ours, and here the first night they were provided for, and the next day were released, and every man of them had money given him.

Sir William Waller, and Colonell Fane tooke in the Castle, Master Denham the high Sheriffe of Surry, Captaine Hudson, Captaine Brecknox, and divers other persons of quality, with 100. vulgar persons, and all the Armes and Ammunition in the Castle, and about 4000. pound in money and plate; and the Common Souldiers had pillage besides to a good value. The taking of this Castle so terrified the Cavaliers in Sussex, that the Cavaliers of the Long Robe there, Mr Lukenor, (the Corporation Projector)¹ Mr. Aderson, Mr. Heath (Sonne to a Delinquent Judge)² &c. began now to traverse the Commands of the Cavaliers. and would gladly joyne issue with the Parliament. || Humphrey Blunden – Speciall Passages and Certain Informations

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¹ Probably Christopher Lewknor, recently disabled as MP for Chichester.
² The poet Robert Heath, whose entry in the Dictionary of National Biography suggests he saw some service with the Royalists; the entry of his father, Judge Robert Heath, concurs.

Sir William Waller takes Farnham Castle

In Military News, Surrey, Sussex on December 2 at 4:54 pm

2 Dec 1642 (Fri) || It was informed the Commons that Sir William Waller a member of their House with a small number of horse and Dragoones, hath taken Farnham Castle in Surrey from the Kings forces that kept the same; that they met with some opposition at the first, and lost three men, but although they had no peeces of Ordnance, they soone blew up the gates with powder, and forced into the Castle, and tooke about six-score prisoners, whereof divers were Commanders and Gentle-men of good quality, seven whereof were this day brought to the Parliament, viz. the high Sheriffe of Surrey, five chiefe Commanders, and one a Malignant person, who are all commited to prison. They also tooke in the said Castle, six hundred pound in money, and 3. hundred sheep, one hundred Oxen, and great store of other provision and powder and shot. || Samuel Pecke – A Perfect Diurnall of the Passages in Parliament

Sir William Waller and Colonell Urrey have gotten possession of the Castle at Farnham, and have therein taken many quarters of corne, much money and Plate, and 80. Cavaliers, whereof two are Denham the new High Sheriffe of Surrey, and Broadrecks the Brewer in Southwarke, and also one Keble a Priest, since which surprisall the aforesaid Commanders are gone to besiege the City of Chichester in Sussex. || Stephen Bowtell – England’s Memorable Accidents